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What is a Court Bond?
“Court bond” is a general term for a variety of surety bonds which are often needed in court proceedings to guarantee protection from financial loss to obligees.
The two most common scenarios requiring a court bond are the appeal of a court’s judgment by a litigant, or the appointment of a fiduciary by a probate court. The former requires litigants to obtain an appeal bond, the latter requires fiduciaries to obtain a fiduciary bond.
All court bonds, regardless of their type, are made between three parties: the obligee (the party requesting the bond, the court), the principal (the party obtaining the bond, appellant or fiduciary) and the surety bond company that underwrites and backs the bond.
If the principal fails to fulfill their obligations as guaranteed by the bond, the surety bond company is there to compensate the obligee for any possible losses they may suffer.
Read more below about the different types of court bonds:
Court Bond Types
A supersedeas bond, also known as an appeal bond, is a type of court bond that is often requested by a court before an appellant can appeal a judgment to a higher court. There are very high requirements for obtaining an appeal bond. The purpose of those requirements is to reduce the possibility of appellate system abuse through unnecessary appeals by plaintiffs.
Appeal bonds guarantee that if an appellant loses the case which has been appealed, they will fulfill their obligations in accordance with the initial judgment. In order to obtain an appeal bond, appellants must always post at least 100% collateral. This collateral is paid out to the claimant in case the appellant loses the appeal.
A fiduciary bond, also known as a probate bond or an estate bond, is a type of court bond which is requested by probate courts when appointing a fiduciary to a particular case. Fiduciaries are usually appointed to manage or administer estates, or any other assets of disabled, deceased or incompetent persons.
Fiduciaries are often also referred to as administrators, guardians, trustees and executors. Therefore, fiduciary bonds are sometimes named after the respective function that a fiduciary has. For example, a trustee has a trustee bond. In essence, all of these serve the same purpose.
Fiduciary bonds protect the persons whose estates or assets the fiduciary has been appointed to manage. If the fiduciary engages in dishonest practices, and is found guilty, the surety bond company backing the bond is there to rectify any such claims, up to the total amount of the bond.
A guardianship bond, also known as a custodian bond, is a type of court bond, which guarantees that a fiduciary will execute his or her duties as ordered by the court.
Court Bond Cost
Unlike with most surety bonds, personal credit score is less important for court bonds, since there are other requirements that determine the price of a court bond.
Court bond cost is largely dependent on the specific case and the specific bond. Appeal bonds, for example, are a peculiar type of bond, since they require at least 100% of collateral to be posted. The amount of this collateral is determined on a case-by-case basis. On top of that collateral, a premium is calculated, which also depends on the case.
Fiduciary bond cost is also dependent on the specifics of the case. Depending on the size or amount of the estates and assets, the probate court may set a particular amount of the fiduciary’s surety bond. To obtain the bond, the fiduciary then has to pay a fraction of it as a premium, which usually ranges between 1%-3% of the total amount set by the court, though larger bond requirements will often see rates of 1% or below.
Get Your Court Bond Fast
To obtain your court bond, simply visit our court bond application page and you can begin the process immediately. Depending on the type of court bond you require, you may need to post additional documents before you receive your bond.
Don’t hesitate to call us at (866)-450-3412 to receive more information on court bonds or if you have questions regarding your particular case. Our surety bond experts are there to help you with your court bond application and respond to any questions you may have!